At the ground-breaking ceremony of a 45 unit apartment building at 117 Union Street, State Representative Tony Cabral voiced his concerns on housing in New Bedford. He began his remarks stating, “We have a housing crisis in the state, and we also have a housing crisis in New Bedford”.
Affordable housing has been a hot button topic of discussion as of late, with many New Bedford residents feeling that rental prices are becoming unrealistically high. The opposing argument is that New Bedford is improving and prices will reflect the growth of the city.
With the arrival of the “off shore wind” industry along with the anticipated arrival of the South Coast Rail, New Bedford seems to be trending upwards. We already have seen an investor betting on New Bedford by building 21 units of luxury apartments in downtown. Representative Cabral went on voicing his concerns that some individuals, especially those on a fixed income, will simply not be able to afford housing in the city.
“I spoke with a lady a few months back that lived on Independence Street and she was scared of what will happen with her. She has worked all her life in the mills in New Bedford and now she is being faced with eviction or having to move because she can no longer afford her rent.” Representative Cabral continued, “We need to create a two tier approach when it comes to housing, both for ‘Market Rate’ which is important to the success of downtown and other areas of the city, but we also have to be conscious about affordable housing in the city.”
Along with Cabral, Mayor Mitchell and other representatives spoke at this groundbreaking ceremony which you can watch in its entirety below.